13 Reasons Why sure has faced its fair share of controversy since the first season's release, but the anticipation for the upcoming second season is still going strong. Details regarding the second season have been few and far between, except for the fact that Hannah Baker will still be a key character in the show's plot.
The first season told the story through a series of tapes, detailing the reasons 17-year-old Hannah decided to take her life. Her suicide revealed a complicated web of events that involved many of her fellow classmates, which will presumably continue to carry over in season two. #Netflix has also announced the addition of seven new characters to the cast, giving viewers a few hints about the mysterious plot:
- Anne Winters as Chloe, the new head cheerleader at Liberty High and considered the latest "it girl"
- Samantha Logan as Nina, a track star with a hidden secret
- Bryce Cass as Cyrus, a troublemaker who becomes a voice of the downtrodden
- Chelsea Alden as Mackenzie, Cyrus's sister who is described as artsy and outspoken
- Ben Lawson as Rick, the Liberty High baseball coach who is beloved by all
- Kelli O’Hara as Jackie, an advocate for the victims of bullying
- Allison Miller as Sonya, a young litigator
- Brenda Strong as Nora Walker, Bryce's mother
- Jake Weber as Barry Walker, Bryce's father
- Meredith Monroe as Carolyn, Alex's mother
- R.J. Brown as Caleb, Tony's boxing trainer
The addition of more students could indicate that more classmates were involved in Hannah's tragic story than we first thought. It's also likely we will witness more instances of bullying, considering the inclusion of an advocate for victims. The presence of a litigator is no surprise, with season two reportedly focusing on the aftermath of Hannah's parents' legal fight against the school and negligence of those involved in their daughter's suicide. Bryce's parents hint that justice might finally be served for his actions. A major mystery for the next season includes the fate of Alex, so adding a character to play his mother proves viewers will get their answers.
It is interesting seeing the baseball coach added, as one of the fan favorites from the first season was star baseball player, Jeff Atkins. The character of Jeff (Brandon Larracuente) passed away in a car accident, but the fact that he was seemingly Clay's one and only friend, made the situation that much more heart-wrenching. By featuring the school's baseball coach, will we get more of Jeff's story with a return of his character through flashbacks?
As production for season two is well underway, the series' two bright stars, #KatherineLangford and #DylanMinnette, spoke to Variety about the controversy surrounding the show and how they believe it ultimately has done more good than bad. Langford, who plays Hannah Baker, shared her thoughts on the impact following the show's release:
“Overall, I think it was a good thing. You need there to be opinions in order for there to be discussions, and that’s really what the show is about — talking about issues that are taboo or that people wouldn’t usually discuss with parents or teachers.”
The 21-year-old Australian actress doesn't agree with some who believe the show "glorifies" suicide, considering the graphic scenes result in a more visceral reaction. Minnette shared the same sentiments when commenting on the backlash:
“What bothers me is that I noticed most of the people who had negative things to say, they didn’t see it. They would say, ‘I’m not going to watch this because this glorifies suicide.’ Well, how would you know unless you watched the season? You’re judging the series and what we’ve done based entirely off of something that you’ve heard or read. I think anyone in their right mind would be able to watch and process what we did and put together the piece that we laid out and be able to see exactly why we did what we did, and know our real intentions, because everybody behind this had the greatest intentions and the best heart and cared so much about this.”
There is no doubt that the cast and crew had the best of intentions when adapting the story and sharing it with viewers of all ages. Whether you agree with the show's message is obviously up to you as the viewer, but there is more story to tell, which probably means more intense subject material for fans to discuss in the near future.
The second season of 13 Reasons Why is set to be released in 2018 on Netflix.
What are your predictions for the second season of 13 Reasons Why? Tell us in the comments below!